Wednesday, July 04, 2012
Andy Griffith 1926-2012
Oh, and his show was funny.
I find it interesting that in this day and age of edgy comedy, THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW still airs like 18 times a day and gets good ratings. There still is a place for warm gentle humor set in small town America with characters who had a genuine affection for each other -- a place free of cynicism and vagina jokes.
Ironic that this comes a day after my Cosby post. Like Bill Cosby, Andy Griffith involved himself in all the show's scripts. But unlike Cosby, he treated his writers with great respect and they stayed with him for years.
Much older readers remember Andy from his bumpkin Air Force private in NO TIME FOR SERGEANTS. If you haven't seen it, rent it. Imagine Woody Boyd from CHEERS only ten times funnier. (And the film features a cameo by a young struggling actor named Don Knotts.)
And if none of this sounds familiar, they mimicked his voice for Huckleberry Hound.
For years Andy lived in Toluca Lake in the San Fernando Valley in a nondescript house on a corner. Just one of the neighbors. A friend who lives in Toluca Lake said one Christmas Eve he heard carolers and wandered outside to see. There they were on a flatbed truck going through the neighborhood.. Led by Andy Griffith. Would you expect any less?
If there was a Mayberry they would surely have a 4th of July parade today. Even as everyone fought back tears. Because a celebration of America is a celebration of Andy, and that's worth a parade, a picnic, and fireworks... as long as Barney isn't lighting them.